7 Signs You’re a “Maneater”
I’ll admit it: I used to be a maneater. When I first moved away from home and into the big city, I got asked out on so many dates that I didn’t see a reason not to be. After all, men do it… so why shouldn’t I?
The Rolling Stones sang it best: “I’ll never be your beast of burden…put me out of misery…” The guy saying this is telling the girl he loves that he won’t be used anymore; he just wants her love, to make love; and despite how she has used him, he will continue to love her no matter how badly she treats him.
Did someone say ‘Maneater’?
I did! Maneaters do exist. They’re not literally beasts of the wild (although some men would beg to differ), nor are they dangerous plants growing in the Amazon rainforest. Maneaters are the female equivalent to our male counterpart’s version, known as a womanizer. We’re all too familiar with that term and quick to bring attention to anyone who acts like a one, but what about women who are using men up and spitting them out quicker than Christina Aguilera changing shoes?! Do we express the same sense of urgency in telling our closest friends they’re maneaters?
The Truth Hurts
Beyond just a rule learned in kindergarten, I’ve found that honesty truly is the best policy. Once maneating behavior is observed, we have a responsibility to help our friend address her behavior! She may already know that her actions are selfish, but she may end up confiding in you her hurts and fears once you confront the reasons why her relationships continue to fail. Until she uncovers and acknowledges her anxieties, she’ll be unable to put a stop to her bad behavior.
At the root of man-eating lies the fear of intimacy.
Helping the Hurt
Being a good listener and encourager who’s available as her friendly confidante will get the ball rolling for your friend’s road to recovery. Remain positive, but firm, and remind her that she has better qualities than what she’s exhibiting through her selfish narcissism. Help her focus on herself more by shifting her energy from thinking about the next five guys she wants to date, to her personal strengths, desires and life goals. Let her know that you don’t want to see her walk through life consistently sabotaging her chance at true love.
Also, be sensitive to personal past trauma that you may not be aware of. There could be deeper issues from her past that cause fear of intimacy, so suggest counseling or therapy where a professional can coach her through her behavior from an objective, neutral perspective.
Smile Through the Pain!
Laughter is truly the best medicine! Keep your friend laughing as she walks through this transition. It’s painful for some because they’ve formed such bad habits in how they function in relationships. Taking some time from the dating scene and spending time with friends is important, and the fun part is getting to talk about other maneaters! (Note: Once man-eating behavior is acknowledged, permission is granted to talk openly about other man-eaters, celebrity or otherwise!) Use celebrity femme fatales as examples of what NOT to do in your future relationships! Make a top 10 list and see how many ‘man-eating-meals’ each beauty has had. We may want to look like Kim Kardashian or the girl we love to hate from our favorite season of The Bachelor, but we don’t want to act like them!
Be sure you’re not exhibiting maneating behavior before you go pointing your finger in your best friend’s face! You might end up without a BFF soon after, so check yourself! (Then you can check your bestie)!
Here are 7 signs you (or your friend) might be a maneater!
- Your Facebook Relationship Status changes more than once a week.
- You can count the number of serious relationships you’ve had on one hand, but can’t seem to get a correct tally of the number of one-night-stands you’ve had.
- You talk about the men in your life like they are decadent desserts displayed on a buffet.
- Not only did you date him, but you dated his best friend, his old roommate and his brother.
- You give your contact info to other guys even when you have a steady boyfriend.
- You find yourself perpetually unhappy in your current relationship.
- Your closest friends don’t trust you around their significant others – OUCH!
Word to the wise – don’t play the maneating game. You just might end up falling in love with the guy you had intended to dismiss, and chances are you won’t be able to recover the relationship once he’s been maneaten! Lose the impulse to man-eat, and just love the man!